On West Virginia Morning, Liz McCormick reports from the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Proctor and Gamble manufacturing site in Berkeley County.  And Roxy Todd talks with novelist Glenn Taylor about his book “A Hanging at Cinder Bottom” set in McDowell County at the turn of the 19th century.  These stories on West Virginia Morning from West Virginia Public Broadcasting – telling West Virginia’s story.

The Patron Saint of Ugly, Marie Manilla
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt


For many people, summer is a time to get lost in literature. And this year, Huntington author Marie Manilla’s new book, The Patron Saint of Ugly is ending up on many summer reading lists. The story is set in a fictional West Virginia town, and most of it is told in the form of transcripts of archived tapes.

Manilla's lead character, Garnet Ferrari, is believed to possess magical healing powers. Her bright red hair and port-wine stains all over her body lead pilgrims from all over the world to seek help through her supposed powers. Yet, Garnet is dead set on dispelling rumors of her abilities, blurring the lines between fact and fiction--furthering the mystery of who she might be.

Chip Hitchcock / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

There’s a new novel out from a West Virginia native about a place that’s very special to her. The book is a collection of family stories about life in Appalachia. 

Laura Long lives in Charlottesville, Virginia now but she grew up in West Virginia. She recalls going to visit her grandmother while traveling from Buckhannon to Clarksburg. Her grandmother lived near a place called Peel Tree. She says the image of that place stayed with her for years, until she was ready to write her first novel.

New Anthology of Appalachian Writers to Be Released

Apr 29, 2014
Eliza Griffiths

Fans of Appalachian literature will have another reason to celebrate as volume six of Shepherd University’s Anthology of Appalachian Writers is set to be released by the end of April.

New Book Examines the Impact of 'Hippie Homesteaders'

Apr 21, 2014
Joe Chasnoff

They’re known as the hippie homesteaders. People who moved to West Virginia in the late 1960s and 1970s to live off of the land. Some considered themselves as hippies, but others just wanted to leave urban environments for rural America.

A new book by Carter Taylor Seaton, Hippie Homesteaders: Arts, Crafts, Music and Living on the Land in West Virginia, examines the impact these people had on West Virginia. 

 You can find out more about this book at this website.

A.J. Lawson / WVU School of Journalism

The nation’s first and only building memorializing African American veterans of WWI is located in Kimball, W.Va. and Thursday evening a celebration of Black History Month will take place there that highlights the work of two previously unrecognized poets from the era.

The two poets were sisters from Beckley who at age 17 and 18 attended the West Virginia Colored Institute, which is now West Virginia State College. An 83 page hard back book featuring their poetry was published in 1919.

Discovering the Book

The Walkabout Company, Wheeling, W. Va / W. Va. Association of Counties

The Wood County Courthouse, the Wetzel County Courthouse and the Kanawha County Courthouse look strikingly similar.  Each are tan stone block buildings with deep red roofs built in the Richardsonian Romanesque style popular in the 1890's and 1910's when they were designed and constructed.  That's just one thing you'll learn when browsing through the pictures of a new book about West Virginia's courthouses.  "West Virginia's Living Monuments: The Courthouses" is a product of the West Virginia Association of Counties and was just published this year.

There are some innovative ideas in Pennsylvania for cleaning acid mine drainage.

We revisit the West Virginia Music Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

Some resilient West Virginia land is saved from development.

And Way Out in West Virginia goes mobile.

Acid Mine Drainage and Fracking: Abandoned mines leach metals and other pollutants into Pennsylvania's streams. Could fracking be one way to clean up this water? Reid Frazier, of The Allegheny Front, reports.

Submitted Photo / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Today is All Hallows Eve, or Halloween, which traces its roots to Gaelic culture when it was believed on this day the boundaries between the living and dead overlap.

It's also a great day to read a ghost story, which is why Berkeley Springs writer John Douglas made sure his new book, A Fog of Ghosts: Haunted Tales and Odd Pieces, was published this month.

Douglas is the former editor of the Morgan Messenger newspaper and he started writing ghost stories in the mid 1970’s. Every year he’d pen one for the paper’s Halloween edition.

Brian Allen / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Kentucky prepares to introduce new science education standards.

A report on the effects of natural gas fracking is due out soon.

And we hear from two West Virginia writers with books out just in time for the spooky season.

Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Stories and photographs from the Cacapon and Lost River Valley are featured in a book just released by West Virginia University Press.

Listening to the Land features the stories of several owners throughout the watershed who have chosen to preserve their land through the Cacapon and Lost River Land Trust.

Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A new Kentucky café caters to Alzheimer’s patients and their families.

Arts and Culture provide economic development in one Kentucky county.

A new book profiles one of West Virginia’s most picturesque river valleys.

And ink lovers turn out for the first WV tattoo expo.

The West Virginia Library Commission is hoping folks across the state will read Kentucky Poet Laureate Frank X. Walker’s book Affrilachia.  The book is this year’s choice for the One Book, One West Virginia program.

During an appearance at the Martinsburg Berkeley County Public Library Wednesday morning Walker read Clifton 1, the first poem in the book. It tells the story of Walker and his father visiting Clifton, Ky., where his father grew up.

Journalist and author Wil Haygood
Courtesy Photo

In most cases, a novel or biography inspires a film. But for journalist and author Wil Haygood, the sequence has been dramatically different.  A November 7th, 2008 article by Haygood in The Washington Post inspired the Lee Daniels film The Butler and then Haygood went back to write the book, The Butler: A Witness to History.